There was confusion in Sabon Gari area of Zaria in Kaduna State on Thursday over the proposed bill to ban the sale and consumption of alcohol.

The hearing of the proposed bill took place at the Sabon Gari Local Government Area secretariat where emotion flew.Sabon Gari is a settlement for non indigenes.

The Sabon Gari Local Government Area had in a letter dated October 21, 2019, invited hotel owners and liquor sellers for the public hearing.

At the hearing on Thursday, the hotel owners, through their lawyer, Mr Daniel Peter, noted that local governments in Nigeria have the powers to license, regulate and control sale of liquor, but he argued that they lack power to prohibit sale of liquor or legislate to prohibit consumption of beer.

He noted that sections 5 and 6 of the said bill clearly prohibited the sale and consumption of alcohol, adding that it was outside the legislative powers of local governments.

He argued that the sections were clearly stated in the fourth schedule of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999(as amended) and “therefore ultra vires and not within the legislative competence of LGs.”